jefferson longshotWritten by Don Byrd

Here is some news for high school juniors and seniors interested in religious liberty topics and looking for an opportunity to win some scholarship cash and maybe even a trip to our nation’s capitol: entry forms for the Baptist Joint Committee’s Essay Scholarship Contest for 2019 are now available!

As usual, the topic reflects an important religious liberty issue from this year’s headlines. The prompt is below:

Essay contest topic:

Houses of worship play an important role in American culture, often addressing issues of public concern. The current tax code permits 501(c)(3) charitable nonprofits, including houses of worship, to be political but not partisan. These religious and secular charitable organizations enjoy favored tax-exempt status and may engage in advocacy to address any moral and/or political issues. They may not, however, tell people who to vote for or against. President Donald Trump supports eliminating what is referred to as the “Johnson Amendment,” but most people of faith support the current law.

In an essay, share whether you think the “Johnson Amendment” should remain.

Your essay should review why we have the “Johnson Amendment” in our current law and how it affects houses of worship, religious organizations and other charitable nonprofits.

The Grand Prize is $2,000 and a trip for two to Washington, D.C.! Visit the BJC’s essay scholarship page for more details on essay requirements and how to enter.

The contest is open to all high school juniors and seniors, and there are no religious requirements. Essays must be postmarked by March 8, 2019 to be considered. Click here for a pdf of the entry form with all of the details. To download a flyer, click here.

What better way to spend the winter holiday when things get slow! Share with others you think might be interested!